Conditions Treatable By Acupuncture

February 28, 2012

Volume 14 Issue 134

An official report on four categories of symptoms, conditions and diseases for which Acupuncture is, or may be, effective, was published some years ago by the World Health Organization (WHO).

The landmark report, “Acupuncture: Review and Analysis of Reports on Controlled Clinical Trials”, is available on the WHO website as a PDF file (see link at end of this Health Report).

In the past few months we have covered the first two list categories in the WHO report: conditions for which Acupuncture has been shown through controlled trials to be treated effectively by Acupuncture, and conditions for which the therapeutic effect of Acupuncture has been shown but for which further proof is needed. The WHO report also contains two more categories of conditions for which Acupuncture has been shown to be helpful.

The first of these two final categories is a list of conditions for which there are only individual controlled trials reporting some therapeutic effects of Acupuncture, but for which Acupuncture is worth trying because treatment by conventional and other therapies is difficult:

Central serous choroidopathy – fluid build-up under the retina

Color blindness


Hypophrenia – mental retardation

Irritable colon syndrome

Neuropathic bladder in spinal cord injury

Chronic pulmonary heart disease

Small airway obstruction

The second of the two final categories is a list of conditions for which Acupuncture may be tried provided the practitioner has special modern medical knowledge and adequate monitoring equipment:

Breathlessness in chronic obstructive pulmonary disease


Convulsions in infants

Angina pectoris (pain of coronary heart disease)

Diarrhea in infants and young children

Late stage viral encephalitis in children

Progressive bulbar and pseudobulbar paralysis – paralysis or weakness of the muscles which control swallowing, talking, movement of the tongue and lips, and sometimes breathing.

We present this information as a guide for patients seeking treatment and to assist patients and health care providers seeking insurance coverage, by showing WHO’s official recognition of Acupuncture benefits.

SOURCE: United Nations World Health Organization